BIROn - Birkbeck Institutional Research Online

    Sensitive periods in brain development: implications for education policy

    Thomas, Michael S.C. and Knowland, V. (2009) Sensitive periods in brain development: implications for education policy. European Psychiatric Review 2 (1), pp. 2-5.

    Full text not available from this repository.


    Functional plasticity is the ability to change behaviour based on experience. Structural changes in the brain occurring with increasing age are sometimes associated with a reduction in functional plasticity, leading to the idea of sensitive periods in development. In this article we assess the implications of recent findings on sensitive periods in brain development for educational policy. We address three points. Can the educational curriculum be optimised by teaching particular subjects at a point of maximum plasticity for the brain systems involved? Do some skills need to be acquired later so that acquisition is optimised only after children reach a certain age? How should educational practice be adjusted to optimise learning for individuals who have passed the age of maximum plasticity?


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): brain plasticity, cognitive development, education, sensitive periods
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Educational Neuroscience, Centre for, Birkbeck Knowledge Lab, Brain and Cognitive Development, Centre for (CBCD)
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 05 Jan 2016 17:28
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:20


    Activity Overview
    6 month trend
    6 month trend

    Additional statistics are available via IRStats2.

    Archive Staff Only (login required)

    Edit/View Item Edit/View Item